Do human psychology, ethics, and crime fascinate you? If yes, it is worth considering a career in criminology.
Criminology studies the nature of the crime, the reasons for committing it, and how the criminal justice system and society deal with it. A criminologist is a sociologist who works with law enforcement and the criminal justice system to keep communities free of crime.
To become a criminologist in Australia, you need a bachelor's degree in the following disciplines: criminology, legal studies, criminal justice, or psychology. You may require a master's degree in criminology and related areas for specialised roles.
This article discusses the steps to becoming a criminologist in Australia. It describes the skills and provides precise answers to commonly asked questions on this career.
You will also learn about criminologist's salary, what they do, criminology jobs, courses, qualifications, how long it takes to become one, and more.
1. What Is Criminology?
Criminology is a social science that studies crime to understand the reasons for crime, its consequences, and methods of its prevention.
It encompasses several areas such as psychology, sociology, social work, and economics to understand crime, criminals, and society fully.
2. Who Is A Criminologist?
A criminologist provides a detailed insight into several aspects of crime. They assess the criminal justice system and suggest measures to prevent or reduce it.
Criminologists work in socio-psychological fields to understand the nature of the crime and the tendencies in criminals that cause them to commit it.
They implement measures to ensure that people follow law and order in society.
3. Why Should You Make A Career As A Criminologist?
A career in criminal studies and criminal justice is entirely secure. You get a reasonably competitive salary along with government benefits.
So, here are some reasons why a career as a criminologist can benefit you:
Criminology helps students apply criminology theories to curb real-world societal issues. Some of these are poverty, social injustice, corruption, opportunity gaps, and discrimination that lead to crime.
A criminologist researches the root causes of violence and its impact on victims. These findings help build effective programs to investigate and resolve criminal acts such as cybercrime, domestic violence, gun crime, vandalism, terrorism, and fraud from society.
Criminologists collaborate with professionals worldwide to eliminate crime and make the Earth a safe place to live in.
Develops Critical Thinking
Being able to think logically and critically is one of the critical skills employers look for in almost all jobs.
When you study criminology, you start to reason, communicate effectively, and integrate criminal theories and research into practice. Graduating with these skills gives you a competitive edge over others and improves your employability.
Get Insights Into The Police Role
As a criminologist, you gain valuable insight into the functioning and operation of the police. You learn about the different kinds of police and the legislative acts that regulate the working of the police service.
Learn About The Different Types of Capital Punishment
When studying criminology, you learn about different types of punishments comprising capital punishment, imprisonment, and reforms.
Variety of Job Roles
It is another good reason to choose criminology as your career.
Based on your area of study, you can choose to work in any of the criminologist jobs in Australia:
Federal or State Police Law Enforcement Officers
Financial Crime Analyst
Policing that includes positions in investigative, police, and security services department
Besides these, there are a few more areas to work as a criminologist, such as government agencies, corrections centres, and victim support services. Others are drug treatment, offender rehabilitation and reintegration, policy-making, or in the Research and Analysis sector.
Ample Scope For Specialisation And Career Growth
Experienced Criminologists can enhance their knowledge and skillset by specialising in the following areas:
Specialisation opens the doorway to other job roles, such as police detectives, private investigators, criminal profilers, forensic analysts, and FBI agents, to investigate cases.
4. What Does A Criminologist Do In Australia?
Criminologists play a vital role in society by understanding why, how, and when a crime occurs. They aim to eradicate crime and its causes from society.
The following are the regular duties of a criminologist in Australia:
Study the criminal justice system and analyse crime data to learn about patterns and evolving trends in crime
Conduct extensive research to understand criminal behaviour
Form policies on the humanitarian treatment of accused criminals
Analyse crime data and research to understand the behaviour, tendencies, and motives of criminals
Work in close association with the criminal justice and law enforcement system for case investigations
Intimate government, policymakers, and law enforcement officers about crime
Write criminology-related articles and research papers.
Form effective crime stoppage and policing strategies to lessen and prevent crime
Arrive at the location of the crime and interview criminals to collect valuable data
Compile reports on types of crime for each state and territory in Australia
Study the operation of the criminal justice system, which comprises police services, law courts, correction centres, and prisons
Recommend effective ways to use the resources of the justice system to fight crime that prevails in the society
Assemble historical data by referring to newspaper files, historical indexes, court records, diaries, and other materials
5. What Skills Do You Need To Become A Criminologist In Australia?
A Criminologist in Australia works with a fundamental objective to investigate and eradicate crime from society.
He should be a good communicator and an expert technical writer to translate the gathered information during the criminal interview into research papers.
Organisational abilities are also crucial as it helps them create goals and plan and manage time effectively without getting overwhelmed with responsibilities. Team working skills help work well with others with various outlooks and innovative ideas.
In addition to the above, there are a few more natural skills and talents that you need to have to undertake the role efficiently:
Adaptability to new teachings and formulating new policies
Analytical and critical thinking
A liking for research work and data analysis
Interest in human behaviour and welfare
Numerical and statistical aptitude
Sense of empathy and compassion
Stable viewpoint on situations
Excellent verbal and written communication skills
A non-judgmental attitude
Ability to handle stress
Enormous patience to deal with complex issues and form policies and strategies to prevent it
Professionalism and work ethics
6. Educational Qualification To Become A Criminologist In Australia
To work as a criminologist in Australia, you need to have the following academic qualifications:
Complete your Senior Secondary Certificate of Education (HSC/ACT Year 12) in English
Complete a criminologist degree in any of the below subjects: Criminology, Criminal Justice, Justice Studies, Legal studies, and Psychology
Pass a Working with Children Check or National Police Check based on your role and employer.
7. Steps To Become A Criminologist In Australia
Here is a guide to learning how to qualify to work as a criminologist in Australia:
Step 1: Get a 3-Year Bachelor's Degree In Criminology
The first step to becoming a criminologist in Australia is to complete a full-time bachelor's degree in criminology. It equips you with the knowledge of why people commit crimes and how to stop them.
Furthermore, it provides practical field exposure and opportunities to become more skilled and qualified.
Step 2: Gain Work Experience
After graduating with a criminology degree, focus on enrolling in government-accredited internship programs. It helps to improve your employability.
Step 3: Get a 2-Year Post-Graduate Degree
A postgraduate criminologist degree is an ideal way to learn in-depth about the Australian criminal justice system and broaden your job prospects.
The course provides a wealth of legal knowledge and techniques to refine your technical and people skills.
Step 4: Get a Police Clearance
You will need to present this document when applying for the job. You can get it online or at a local post in Australia.
Step 5: Apply For Jobs
Make an impressive resume listing your qualifications, certification courses and internships (if any), job-specific strengths and skills, and criminology-related work experience. You need this to show yourself as the ideal candidate for a position.
Register on job portals and sites and apply for criminologist jobs in Australia with your resume and cover letter.
8. Criminology Related Degrees, Certifications, And Courses In Australia
A degree in criminology is the first step to making a rewarding career in Australia and worldwide. The program offers a deep understanding of the issues in modern criminology and the criminal justice system.
It empowers a graduate to pursue a broad array of job opportunities within the criminal justice system or external organisations related to the sector.
Criminology Course - The University of Western Australia
Bachelor of Criminology - Murdoch University
Master of Criminology - Murdoch University
Bachelor of Criminology - Flinders University
Bachelor of Criminology - The University of Adelaide
Graduate Certificate of Security Studies and Criminology - Macquarie University
New South Wales
Bachelor of Criminology & Criminal Justice - Universal of New South Sales Sydney
Bachelor of Security Studies and Master of Criminology - Macquarie University
Bachelor of Criminology - Western Sydney University
9. Working Conditions For A Criminologist In Australia
Criminologists generally work in courtrooms, government departments, office environments, tertiary education institutions, and private industries.
Sometimes they may even need to travel to prisons and community-based correctional centres to conduct interviews.
Though criminologists usually have regular working hours, they may have to work irregular hours when called to investigate a crime location.
10. How Much Money Do Criminologists Earn In Australia?
A criminologist is a high-paid profession offering attractive salaries to professionals. Based on earnings data, the average hourly criminologist salary in Australia is $44.
Salary Based on The Years of Experience
An entry-level criminologist earns an average yearly salary of $52,930
An early-level criminologist with 1 to 4 years of experience makes a total compensation of $65,641 yearly.
An intermediate Criminologist with 5 to 9 years of experience earns an annual salary of $85,481.
Finally, a senior-level criminologist with eight or more years of experience earns around $112,688 yearly.
Salary Based on The Criminologist Career
A criminal investigator receives an average pay of $74,680 every year.
A sociologist criminologist earns an annual average wage of $74,010.
Criminology profilers who work with the FBI earn $50,748 annually.
Salary Based on The Location
The average Criminologist salary in Melbourne is AU$55,481.
A qualified Criminal Investigator/ Detective in Brisbane earns AU$99,554 every year.
The average Criminologist salary in Sydney is between $103914 and $122947 per annum.
In South Australia, the average criminologist's earnings are between $99,827 and $118,135 yearly.
11. Job Opportunities For A Criminologist In Australia
There is a constant demand for criminologists in public and private places. Universities hire criminologists to teach criminology in law, sociology, and legal studies.
Justice agencies at the government, state, and territory levels employ criminologists as policy advisers and research officers.
Official bodies and departments such as the Australian Federal Police, Australian Crime Intelligence Commission, the Australian Institute of Criminology, the Federal Court Of Australia, and community-based corrective institutions also recruit criminologists in crime statistics, policy creation, juvenile justice, law reform, and adult corrections.
Besides public institutions and bodies, private welfare agencies and specialist security firms also hire criminologists to analyse and prevent crime.
12. FAQ's On Becoming A Criminologist In Australia
What Subjects Do You Need To Become A Criminologist?
You need to study several subjects to become a criminologist, such as law, sociology, history, anthropology, psychology, government, geography, criminal justice, forensic science, and statistics.
How Much Time Does It Take To Work as a Criminologist In Australia?
A bachelor's degree in criminology is enough for some roles. It takes up to 3 years to complete the degree.
However, for more specialised roles, employers look for experienced criminologists with at least a master's degree in psychology, criminal justice, or criminology. (up to 5 years)
Thus, the ideal duration to work in a criminology job depends on the type of role you want to perform in a public/private institution.
Is It Difficult To Pursue a Job In Criminology?
No. Several jobs are available in the criminology sector, from entry-level to senior-level. Though the jobs are easily accessible, their availability may vary from one state to another.
It is beneficial to refer to employers' websites to get precise information about the job profile, eligibility, and application steps.
Those who plan to make a career in criminology should start by becoming police officers and later advance to other specialised roles in this sector.
Where Can I Find State-Specific Official Criminology Resources In Australia?
New South Wales: NSW Police, Recruitment Branch
Queensland: Crime and Corruption Commission Queensland
Victoria: Recruiting Services Branch, Victoria Police
Western Australia: Police Recruiting, WA Police Academy
South Australia: Police Recruiting Section, South Australian Police
Northern Territory: Northern Territory Police, Recruitment Department
ACT: ACT Policing, Careers
Tasmania: Recruiting Centre, Tasmania Police Headquarters
Criminology is ideal for those pursuing a challenging career to serve and improve society.
We hope the article helped you better understand the criminology job and qualification requirements to plan your career.
With hard work and dedication, you can achieve anything and make your dream to become a criminologist in Australia come true.
Useful Links to Explore: